Alaska is a place of wonder. Everything from the greenery to the wildlife shows such variety. Here are some of the many fish species you can encounter while on the waters in Alaska!
Remain in freshwater up to 4 years before moving out to the ocean for up to 3 years. Return to freshwater to reproduce.
(pic: Alaska Fly Fishing Goods)
Fingerlings stay up to a year in freshwater before moving to brackish waters and then the ocean. Adults return to reproduce after a period of 1-5 years.
Split between entirely freshwater and saltwater thriving and freshwater reproducing. Fished for commercially and recreationally.
(pic: Alaska Outdoors Supersite)
Vitally important commercially targeted species. Very migratory and have plentiful spawns due to females producing up to 6 million eggs annually. Also accompanied by the less common Saffron Cod.
(pic: Tradex Foods Inc)
Mostly live in solitary unless young in age. Can live up to 205 years. Grow up to 3.2 ft.
Primarily schooling and can take 18 years to reach adulthood. Lifespan of approximately 80 years. Fished for commercially and recreationally.
(pic: Vic High Marine Biology)
May be found in small schools. Known to occupy dens of octopi in rocky structure.
Typically found in schools in kelp forests. Can live up to 70 years. Fished for commercially and recreationally.
(pic: NOAA Fisheries)
Very common to be in massive schools. Found throughout water column. Live up to 65 years.
(pic: Baranof Fishing Excursions)
Known to be in small groups or alone. Protective of territory which can take of a wide range of characteristics. Live up to 95 years.
(pic: State of Alaska)
Seen in tide pools when young. Active when older in deep water and at the surface.
(pic: Glacier Bay Sportfishing)
Solitary in nature and extremely territorial. Found on rocky bottoms. Can live up to 80 years.
(pic: Angling Unlimited)
One of the largest species of rockfish that can live up to 150 years. Produce up to 2.7 million eggs per year.
Found at depths up to 2200 ft. Stay relatively small and live up to 76 years.
(pic: Angling Unlimited)
One of the most important prey species for larger predators. Targeted commercially and recreationally with a lifespan over 110 years.
Bottom-dwelling in solitary or small groups. Consistent breeding characteristics with males protecting egg clusters, often in the same location year after year.
(pic: Tradex Foods)
Commonly preyed upon fish in reefs. Essential to ecosystem and food chain
(pic: Oregon Marine Reserves)
Red Irish Lord
Typically motionless on bottom of rocky structure. Can take up octopus dens. Both males and females guard eggs during spawning.
Pacific Staghorn Sculpin
Very hearty species for all salinity levels. Often found in tidepools along shore. hide entire body in sand, exposing just their head.
Live in wide range of habitats. Can tolerate brackish water and is often preyed upon by larger fish.
(pic: Coastal Fisheries Ecology Lab)
Slow swimming close to bottom and is found at depths up to 700ft. Part of the Sea Raven family.
(pic: Seattle Aquarium)
Pacific Spiny Lumpsucker
Typically found near the shoreline. Have modified pelvic disks to adhere to various structures to avoid current.
Bottom dwelling over a large range of structure types. Found at depths up to 300 ft. Can grow to reach 5 ft.
Found in various different structures up to 300 ft. Predatory with incredibly strong jaws. Teeth to eat invertebrates.
(pic: Pier Fishing in California)
Commonly found in rocky substrates and reefs. Lifespan up to 28 years. Can be seen living in couples.
These make up for some of the fish you may come across, but salmon and rockfish are not all that Alaska has to offer. In our coming blog, we will highlight some of the many flounder species that call the state home!